On the third floor of an old shop next to an alley in Kuala Belait lies an art shop that represents more than what it turns out to be. To me it is a ray of hope for a country town like many others, where young people move away to the bigger city for growth and development.
Operating the gallery is a twenty something entrepreneur named Kristen who left her well paying, secure job with the government and poured all of her life savings to pursue a dream that she believes in.
Kristen’s business has been going for over a year and a half now, and is doing very well. Half of the premises are dedicated to both local and foreign artists to exhibit their art, for which she acts as the middleman. The other half has an extended long table, that stretches beyond many arm’s length. A place where many of the country’s future Picassos are developed.
Kristen was proud to announce that most of the furniture is made of raw materials, which she and her colleagues spend hours assembling. They even made up their own black board with by their own painting. If your mental picture gives you an impression of a decorated garage, I would have done her gallery little justice. Jadyn’s Art gallery resembles the chic unfinished warehouse look of Melbourne’s art galleries. It virtually transports you to another world, during the brief moment you are in there.
Ten minutes in conversation with this stranger, and I almost get to know the cost of her shop’s rental, the profit margin and the names of her suppliers, but she is not worried. Chances are, she is and will be the only person doing what she does in the entire town, may I add, with flair.
Welcome to a new generation of entrepreneurs in Brunei; confident, transparent and more importantly passionate. Kristen’s energy is invigorating, her customer service, superb. I ended buying some coloring sets from her not out of obligation, but as a vote of support. Kristen called me back before departing the store to hand me the difference in discount which both of us had overlooked.
Kristen’s example fits right into all of the three principles describe in this book; Culture, Passion and Relationship. She did not attend any of my courses. She does not need to.
Need I say more; go check it out for yourself. Buy some art pieces from Kristen, to preserve the audacity to dream, the development of future artists and, to preserve arts.
Tell Kristen I sent you.